tv Politics Nation MSNBC December 6, 2012 3:00pm-4:00pm PST
weak economy, they still blame w. this isn't about right or wrong. that's what w. did and his crowd did. i want president obama to do what he looks like he's already doing, getting it done right and on time. he knows it's an unclear dimension, nobody knows, i don't know, how bad the whirlwinds will be if we fail to do this on time. and one thing for certain, there's no guarantee that a huge drop in faith by the world economic markets will be followed by a quick rebound. as i said, this is a real cliff, not a bungy jump. that's "hardball" for now. "politicsnation" starts with al sharpton. thanks, chris. it didn't come from the white house, it didn't come from
democrats, it came from senator jim demint. the tea party hero who famously made this vow with the president's health care law. >> if we're able to stop obama on this, it will be his waterloo. it will break him. >> guess what, it wasn't the president's waterlook but today he announced that he's leaving the senate to run a conservative think tank. and just like that, gone is is a man who represented all of the obstruction, the man who defined gridlock and was the face of ugliness in the tea party movement. the night of the president's inauguration, he met with other republicans to plot against the president. he threatened to single handedly shut down the senate in 2010 and stood strong with congressman
todd akin after his legitimate rape comments. today's announcement is another line in the tea party obit. it's another nail in the tea party coffin. a movement that vowed to change washington. >> the tea party movement is alive and well. >> it's going to continue to redefine the political landscape in 2012. >> this november we're going to take back the senate and fortify the house. be aware, washington. tea party patriots are alive and well. >> didn't exactly work out that way, now, did it? this election sent tea party stars packing. joe walsh, gone. allen west, gone. richard mourdock, gone. todd akin, gone. and it's not just the election losses. the cracks are springing up all
over the tea party kettle. this week, we learned that dick armey, the head of the major tea party group, freedom works, is out. one by one, gop lawmakers have distanced themselves from the tea party's once sacred anti-tax pledge. 44 and counting. and the american people are rejecting the entire movement. the group's disapproval rating has jumped 24 point since 2010. so the tea party's monster looks like its on its last leg. all i can say is, good rid dance. joining me now is former governor of pennsylvania, ed rendell, and now an msnbc political analyst. and joan walsh, an msnbc political analyst. thank you both for your time tonight. >> thanks, rev. >> my pleasure. >> joan, let me start with you.
senator demint is out. how huge is that? >> i think it's huge, are reverend al. i really do. he said health care would be the president's waterloo while the president is getting ready to be inaugurated for a second time and jim demint is packing up his senate office. he could be serving in a majority if he hadn't backed such crackpot losers. they really would have taken it back if it wasn't for christine o'donnell and others. like dick armey, he did leave his post, reverend al, but he got an $8 million payday. they always get more pay but it's great to see somebody like that actually having to leave the senate. >> he was one of the faces of the tea party movement, governor. with him stepping down today, what was that mean, in your opinion, for the future of the tea party who has already lost
major characters and major players in the congress so far? >> well first, rev, i want to go on record and say that i'll miss these guys. they drove more people away from the republican party to become independents or democrats. but the whack co- fashion isn't gone entirely. because of some idea that the u.n. was going to come in and take over home schooling, they are nuts. and they are still nuts enough around to make trouble for the republican party. you're right. sensible republicans are moving away in droves. what is it? 44 republicans have already said they are not going to honor the no tax pledge? that's good news for the country and getting things done in washington, d.c. and when you look at what happened in the senate, with bob
dole on the floor, the most honored republican to serve in the senate in a long time, a war hero begging them to confirm that treaty, to ratify that treaty, 38 republicans voted no on some whacked out idea. >> no. that's the danger, governor, of being dismissive. and i think you're right. but the ugliness combined with their powerful moment, they are talking about breaking the president, that's the president's word, i'll break them. and to stand up and see them vote in 2012 against disability with the former standing party asking them, the ugliness of this is unimaginable. >> horrible. >> joan? >> it really was a low moment. and almost unpredictable. every time i think they can't surprise me, they surprise me again, reverend al.
so governor rendell is right. it's way too early for us to crow, to say that the fever is broken. this is a sign that jim demint thinks that he's going to strip the betina off the heritage foundation. they are really a talking point tank but now it shows the ideology rather than intellect. jim demint has not had an original idea himself. he's all about platitudes. >> take a listen. >> either way, my expectation is, my hope is that that's no longer their number one priority and i'm hoping that once the election season is over that that spirit of cooperation comes for to the fore. >> are we seeing a change?
are we moving in that direction, in your opinion, governor? >> we're clearly moving in that direction, reverend, whether it can go all the way, that the country needs -- i don't know. and it's really going to be incumbent on the president. as the movement start, the president has got to take hold and say to these republicans, okay, let's talk seriously. what do you need to make this deal work? what do you need to get this deal in a position that we'll get this country back on track and cause our economy to get back on track? the good news is, if we can do a deal on the budget by compromising and coming together, then we can go after immigration and infrastructure and energy and education. the things that are still on the agenda that are crucial to moving this country forward. you know, as important as the debt bill is, it still isn't going to create jobs in the short term. you've got to do energy. we've got to do infrastructure. we've certainly got to do immigration.
we owe that to the american people and to those children. there's so many things that we've got to do that if we can do this successfully and get it done and see the economy take off and an investment come into this country, then we go after the other four challenges and if we can do all those, he'll be an incredibly successful president and i think congress' approval rating will begin to rise again. >> joan, it still seems that some of the tea party types, including senator demint still thinks it was the messaging, not the substance that was wrong why they lost the election. listen to what senator demint said. >> and republicans were not doing a good job of convincing americans that we care about every one of them and that our policies are going to make them better. i'm a conservative first. i believe if we do a better job of helping americans understand
what we're trying to do, to showcase every place in the country that our ideas are working at the state level, that that will help those at the federal level who want to carry those policies. and, frankly, if independents and democrats want to work with us on conservative ideas, i can do that better in heritage than as a partisan. >> so he's saying that it was not the message, it was the messaging. and they are touting, among others, one that is getting a lot of concern attention is tim scott. he's demint's hand-picked successor. he's backed by conservatives like red state's erick eric son and would be the first conservative block gop since 1979. he was nowhere tea party. >> i don't want to speak for the
man but seriously in the way that his tea party has moved to the right i don't think tim scott can do that. african-americans don't vote democratic because of pigmentation. it's about policy. they all want to say that it's because of the poor and they don't have those policies or else they would have tried them and we'd be in a different position. they've had power for a long time. >> i've got to leave it there. ed rendell and joan walsh, thank you for your time tonight. >> thanks, rev. >> coming up, it's all out war inside the republican party. wait until you hear what jim demint told rush limbaugh today about speaker boehner. plus, michigan police pepper spray protesters after governor schneider calls for a right to work bill that strips union power. president obama just responded to this.
we're live in michigan tonight. and it's a political battle for the ages. we'll tell you why first lady michelle obama and former president bill clinton are going head to head. you're watching "politicsnation" on msnbc. i just spotted mitt romney at costco again. go ahead and return that oval rug you ordered. [ male announcer ] now's the perfect time to buy an adjustable version of the most highly recommended bed in america. the tempur-pedic ergo system. treat yourself to the ultimate sleep experience and save up to $400 during the tempur ergo savings event. plus visit tempurpedic.com for full details on our 0% apr financing with up to five years to pay. don't wait.
tea. susan thinks that they will attempt to brand themselves for 2014. and barbara says, this tea party thing has got to end sooner or later. let's hope it's soon. we've got more on the warning signs. please head over to facebook on "politicsnation." "like" us to join the conversation long after the show ends. you turn for legal matters? at legalzoom, we've created a better place to handle your legal needs. maybe you have questions about incorporating a business you'd like to start. or questions about protecting your family with a will or living trust. and you'd like to find the right attorney to help guide you along, answer any questions and offer advice. with an "a" rating from the better business bureau legalzoom helps you get personalized and affordable legal protection. in most states, a legal plan attorney is available with every personalized document to answer any questions. get started at legalzoom.com today. and now you're protected.
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the resignation tea party de-facto leader senator jim demint could start a civil war within the gop. today demint called him into the joke if he was asked if he was forced out of the senate. >> i can it's safe to say th boehner is not forcing either of you out? >> that is true. it might work the other way. >> it might work the other way? senator demint might have been laughing but i know a threat when i hear one and so does john boehner and the so-called tea party stripping for lawmakers of their committee assignments. now he's facing a new threat from the tea party. today demint also said that democrats weren't the problem. the problem was actually with
republicans and control of our message and our ideas senator demint and now that's a scary thought. joining me now is former congressman, a democrat from virginia and joe madison and nationally syndicated host thank you both for being here tonight. >> thank you. >> congressman, let me start with you. senator demint starts about firing speaker boehner on rush limbaugh show. where is this war going? >> well, you do see a real split on the republican side right now between the establishment figures.
let's be clear, the power still sits with the tea party more than with the establishment. you've seen this in the picking of the next gubernatorial candidate. and so it's a small number of people who are trying to move away from that ideology and you also see the institutional shift. something like the heritage foundation that used to be a real generator of ideas, taking one of the flat earthers out of the senate to try to come in and be the face of that is not moving in a direction. this is a senator who stood with todd akin after and put his name out there and that's largely been pushed down by the base of the party and of the movement. >> now, joe, when you see senator demint tweeting statements that really ripped speaker boehner's debt talks, he tweeted this, speaker boehner's offer of an $800 billion tax hike will destroy jobs and allow
politicians in washington to spend even more. he was part of those on the far right that was putting a lot of heat on boehner for entertaining any movement at all towards some kind of resolution of this situation with the cliff. the fiscal cliff. >> absolutely. and i think the other thing you need to understand about this 800 billion is that as former president clinton said, the arithmetic is there. it still doesn't added a up. i think this is the problem that they are going to have with the heritage foundation. i'm not a fan of the heritage foundation. they are a conservative group. they do primarily more research than they do anything else and what they have done is chosen a man who has very limited research experience. they clearly have decided to politicize the heritage foundation more so than it's ever been politicized before and
then secondly boehner has this problem. eric cantor. he is in the same position caesar was in. and that is, knives are pointed at his back every time he turns around. >> well, congressman, the point that i think is so interesting, most americans is here was a guy, senator jim demint, that said i'm going to break president obama. they started plotting the night of the inauguration. they started meeting. they said they were going to block everything. they were going to bring him down. and he's the one leaving washington today and going to a private think tank in washington, leaving capitol hill and staying in washington. so i think the big picture here is the guy that really said he was going to break this president, watched him be reelected with a larger margin that george bush and he's
leaving the u.s. senate. >> well, there are winner and losers in the u.s. senate. he was willing to back some of the most extreme and unelectable republicans in primaries and thereafter and many more establishment republicans feel like he may have cost them the majority. so he still wants to be committed to this 100% commitment of ideology of getting thing done because we really need the senate to get things done. we need more problem solvers that are willing to come together like the deficit and job crisis that we continue to want to tackle. so i think you do see him saying, hey, i have this idea. we're going to take it by the storm. it didn't work. the president is still standing and moving forward. and i think there's some in his party who are eager to try to get a balanced approach and prevent us from going off this cliff which would be a very serious thing and we're right up
against it. >> don't they have, joe, a real civil war going on in the republican party when you have on one hand sarah palin open fending the tea party's role saying on facebook, for all this new talk about how the gop needs a populous movement, it would do them good to remember they already have them. it's called a tea party movement and it won for them the majority they now enjoy in the house. this is palin. but on the other side, the "new york times" says today that boehner has consolidated his grip on republicans in the house. the times says many house republicans appear to view mr. boehner with the same sort of respect that a dark children award their parents for the sage counsel they ignored in their younger days. many members realize they have little choice left but to support him. for those few that palin is referring to, there's a collision course here in the
republican party. >> that's right. and part of that reason is because they can count. they can count and they also have -- they can count into the future. they have 18 months. and 18 months is not a long way off. and people have spoken in significant numbers that if you have the same ideology, the same extremists -- and that's the other thing that we should watch -- who replaces demint in south carolina? it will be interesting to see if it will be someone as extreme as demint was or someone more moderate. i would say that you were 100% right. there is a civil war going on among the leadership. remember, the leader used to brag about they didn't have leaders and what happened was they were hijacked by big money. that's what happened to the tea party. they are not the same tea party that you and i -- remember in that march when we walked past
the demonstration on the lincoln memorial? that's not the same tea party that evolved. >> former congressman joe perriola and joe madison, thanks for coming on tonight. >> thanks. protests pepper sprayed in michigan. the president just responded. big story tonight. and a memo to the gop, when you've lost ann coulter on taxes, you know you're in trouble. stay with us.
we've told you how papa john's ceo is eating his words after criticizing the health care law. but he's not the only one. darden's restaurant which owns olive garden and red lobster and other chains says it will cut full-time hours so they wouldn't have to give them what was health insurance. they want service treated right and darden's anti-health care crab fest hurt the bottom line. the company's ceo lowered expectation next year based, in part, on the recent media coverage that focused on darden and how we might accommodate
health care reform. fallen revenues linked to the rhetoric. it now says no current workers will lose full-time status and in 2014, hourly employees will be able to get the same insurance as executives. the tide is turning on the health care law. 49% of the country want to keep or expand the law while only 33% support repeal. that's the lowest support for repeal since the law was passed in march of 2010. did red lobster think that they could deny that this is the claw of the land? nice try, but we've got you. [ male announcer ] alka-seltzer plus presents the cold truth.
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we sat down with a middle class family that would be hit with a $4,000 tax hike if republicans refused to budge. >> i'm not going to sign any package that prevents it going up for top 2% but i do remain optimistic that we can get something done for family like this one and that is good for the american economy. >> it's no wonder the president is optimistic. all signs say republicans are getting ready to cave. "the washington post" reports that more and more gop lawmakers to back tax hikes for the rich. republicans are growing alarmed that they could be blamed if washington is unable to resolve the fiscal stalemate.
even the president's most outspoken critics are saying, it's time to give in. >> if the bush tax cuts are repealed and everyone's taxes go up, i promise you republicans will be blamed for it. >> so are you saying, then, for pr purposes that they should give into obama on the tax rate in. >> not exactly. well, yeah, i guess i am. >> ka pit late to obama who is -- we don't have a revenue problem, ann. >> we lost the election, shawn. >> i can't believe i'm saying this, but ann coultter is right. they lost. the question may now be when, not if, the republicans will cave on taxes. joining me now is dana milbank, columnist for "the washington post." he's writing about the republicans waving tax hikes and cynthia tucker and visiting professor of journalism at the
university of georgia. thanks to both of you for being here tonight. >> hi, reverend. >> good to be here, reverend. >> dana, are republicans really ready to cave? >> well, reverend, first of all, terrific particular to see you and ann coulter on the same page. they've caved already. they have said, we're going to agree to an $800 billion tax increase. it's entirely possible that they are going to go off the cliff any way. it doesn't mean that a deal is imminent. it basically means that they surrender. they used to say that they wouldn't give a dime of tax increase for spending cuts. now they are saying, let's go and do it if we can get $3 of taxes for spending cuts.
>> the choice may be down to, do they make the deal before the deadline or do they let it go over the cliff and then come back and vote the tax cuts for the medical class iddle class f to have a tack increase. somewhere in between those two? >> i think that's absolutely right. and there are some important details to be worked out here. dana mentioned that the republicans have signed on to 800 billion but let's remember that the president has asked for about twice that much in revenues. so i still think the president is going to seek at least a trillion, maybe more. and that has yet to be worked out. so, yes, republicans will give in. they have made a huge move after two decades when, you know, grover norquist enforced very strictly this pledge that said
no tax increases ever. you know, over my dead body. republicans have made a very significant move that says, okay. we will accept some tax increases. but let's remember, there are some very important details to be worked out. how much and when. will they just say, okay, we will stand aside while democrats pass this tax cut for the middle class and then let the tax cuts for the wealthy engs pyre? that could happen. but does it happen before the end of the year? does it happen after the end of the year? >> now, dana, on that point, a lot of this is that they seem to have already lost the american public. in a new series of polls. quinnipiac shows that americans have views close to the
president. 65% say raise taxes on $250,000 plus. 85% of polls pledged against raising taxes. that's 85%. 51% think that the gop is negotiating in bad faith. so the public seems to be gone from the republican cause. >> right. by two to one in virtually all of these polls we are seeing that they are likely to blame the republicans if the fiscal cliff is reached. and i think you've seen president obama going around the country, as with that family and the clips that you just showed, to try to use the bully pulpit. certainly the economic disadvantage is going to hurt all of us. he doesn't want to push it too far. it's another reason why there's -- we still have a few
weeks to probably go to see this play out. neither side can be seen as cutting a deal with any days to spare. it looks at this point like it has to be one of these last minute deals. >> cynthia, the president said he was glad to hear that republicans are coming around on this. listen. >> i'm encouraged to see that there has been some discussion on the part of republicans, the acknowledging for needs of adig nal revenue. the only way to get revenue for a balanced deficit reduction plan is to make sure that we're modestly increasing rates for people who can afford it. folks like me. >> cynthia, at the same time, not everyone is happy about the gop talking about some form of compromise on tax hike. listen to rush limbaugh. >> the republicans have just given in. they have compromised, what have
you, on the premise that raising taxes on the rich will fix the problem. it was weak. the republicans have conceded the language. >> ultimately, cynthia, will the republicans have to eventually take on these guys like limbaugh? will this come down to whether or not they are going to stand up to the far right elements who have swayed so much influence over their base in the past? >> well, reverend al, you've been talking about the civil war going on within the republican party and that's what we're seeing play out right now. now, one of the dinks between now and last year was that john boehner seems to have his house republican caucus fully behind them. he did not have that when he was trying to negotiate with the president to get that grand
bargain. every time he looked up, eric cantor or somebody was stabbing him in the back. that doesn't appear to be happening this time. he seems to enjoy the support of republicans in his caucus. however, outside congress, right win gers are having a field day. it's not just rush limbaugh. erick erickson are nuts that boehner is talking about some kind of compromise and i think we're going to see this not just overtaxes, tax rates, and cuts, all sorts of things, over social issues, over immigration playing out for at least the next four years. there are some republicans who have gotten realistic about the
fact that the party lost but there are some republicans who clearly haven't gotten the message yet. so i think it's going to be messy for them for at least the next four years. >> thanks to both of you for your time tonight. >> thank, reverend. >> straight ahead, a developing story. massive protests in michigan after governor rick schneider declares war on workers. police were seen pepper spraying the protesters. we are live in michigan. and what is michelle obama and former president bill clinton fighting for? it's a good thing. [ woman ] too weak.
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scott walker is under fire after endorsing a plan to end same-day voter registration in wisconsin two weeks ago. now he's trying to calm the rumors to convince everyone, it's not a big priority for him. >> it's a ridiculous issue. my priority is about jobs, it's not a part of my legislative priorities. it hasn't been something i've thought about. >> just something he talked about? a ridiculous issue? sorry, i'm not buying that one. because on the same day that he
called this a ridiculous issue, two of his buddies in the state house were actively signing up co-sponsors for the bill that would end election day registration. so he can say it's not number one priority but let's be clear, if it gets through the state senate, he will sign it. so he's saying one thing and doing another. governor rick schneider is doing the same thing and it reminds us of what happened in wisconsin. that's next. ♪
so-called essentially gut the state's labor movement, including the historic auto union. republicans introduced the plan just hours ago, bending the rules that require bills to sit for five days to allow public comment. house republicans passed the plan late today after democrats walked out in protests. as we speak, the bill is being debated in the senate. police even used pepper spray on some of the demonstrators inside of the chemical. eight people are arrested. why are governor schneider and the republicans doing this now oh? because it's their last chance. they lost seats in this election they may not have the votes when they meet next month. so republicans are trying to ram it through now. it's a page straight out of the scott walker playbook. moments ago, president obama issued a statement saying, he opposes this new bill. this plan is an outrage.
and we can't let it happen. joining me now is democratic mayor of lansing, michigan. he ran against schneider in 2010. mayor, thanks for joining us tonight. >> my pleasure. it's a sad, sad day in michigan. if anybody doesn't think that this is an attack on democracy, this is the only second time that i've seen the capitol locked on the five-day workweek, and these labor unions are the most democratic institutions there are. >> now, when you listen to governor schneider today, let me tell you what he says about this law and how people are krcritice
and thinks it's a much better description. >> people call it right to work but i think it's a much better description to say this is about quality in the workplace. >> i do not view this as something against the unions. i support the unions in many regards. a union that can can stand up, how is that supporting unions and helping working class people. >> i mean, please, come on. that's not believable on its face. please. this is an absolute attack on unions and the notion that it's fair, it's the right to work for less. we know that six out of the top ten states are right to work states. beyond that, consider the issue of fairen.
workers should have a right to vote and their may not be uninimity. you don't have to withhold your dues because you don't agree with the tax leadership and this is absolute nonsense in a democratic way. it's the majority rules. >> now, you have states all over the country that already have the so-called right to work laws and if you compare those states and the state laws is $1500 less a year. the workplace death rate is 53%
higher. nine of the 12 states with worst jobless rates are right to work laws. so there is a substantive difference in key areas between states that have these laws and states that allow people to organize and unionize. >> absolutely. what we're concerned about is laws and economic growth. by the way, look at the distraction. look at what is going on at the capitol. when we should have a governor out busy attracting jobs and bringing jobs and economic development to our state, instead we're going to have a massive destruction. we are going to go to war over this issue. i am appalled that the republicans have brought this issue to the floor as though this is what we should be spending our time on when people need jobs and economic growth. this is going to propel people from coming because people don't want to be part of this circus. >> well, we're going to follow this story very closely. thank you for joining us.
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version of the incredible "america the beautiful "while standing next to mitt romney. election day is the moment to celebrate the winners in politics. but for musicians, the big night is the grammys. the list includes familiar stars like kanye west and adele and maroon 5. there's one category that really caught my eye. it's the one for best spoken album, which includes audio books as well. check out the nominees. first lady michelle obama. she's nominated for her book, american grown. but look at her competition. it's former president bill clinton. he's nominated for his book "back to work." my colleague and friend, rachel
maddow was nominated for her book "drift." incredible. but i'm disappointed. there's some serious snubs this year. i mean, how did this fellow performer not make the list. ♪ >> that deserved something. and mitt romney's tough year just got tougher. look at this snub. ♪ o beautiful for spacious skies for amber waves of grain ♪ ♪ for purple mountains majesty, above the fruited plain ♪ >> and perhaps the biggest snub of all, not jusn